New Special Materials

Material Hardness, HP/inch, sundering and breaking rules:

For simplicity, instead of trying to figure out how many fractions of an inch thick a sword is, we will determine equipment hit points based on the weight of the weapon, armor or object.

 Material HP/2 pound* Hardness Weight Special
 Bone 2 5  fragile
 Obsidian 3 5 75% fragile
 Bronze 3 10  fragile
 5 10  
 Cold Iron
 5 10  
 Alch. Silver
 5 8  
 Mithril 7 15 50% 
 Adamantine 10 20  
 Living Steel
 8 15  
 Glassteel 5 10  
 Galvorn 8 25  
 Cthonic 8 15  
 Polydenium 7 10  
 Orichalcum 6 20  
*HP/pound: for weapons, it's per 2 pounds. For armor, it's per 5 lbs. Pounds are measured according to the base item (before modifications to actual weight from the material). Round up.

Hardness 20. Cost: Ammunition +60 gp, Light armor +5,000 gp, Medium armor +10,000 gp, Heavy armor +15,000 gp, Weapon +3,000 gp

Mined from rocks that fell from the heavens, this ultrahard metal adds to the quality of a weapon or suit of armor. Weapons fashioned from adamantine have a natural ability to bypass hardness when sundering weapons or attacking objects, ignoring hardness less than 20. Armor made from adamantine grants its wearer damage reduction of 1/— if it's light armor, 2/— if it's medium armor, and 3/— if it's heavy armor. Adamantine is so costly that weapons and armor made from it are always of masterwork quality; the masterwork cost is included in the prices given below. Thus, adamantine weapons and ammunition have a +1 enhancement bonus on attack rolls, and the armor check penalty of adamantine armor is lessened by 1 compared to ordinary armor of its type. Items without metal parts cannot be made from adamantine. An arrow could be made of adamantine, but a quarterstaff could not.

Cold Iron
Hardness 10. Cost: double normal price.

This iron, mined deep underground and known for its effectiveness against demons and fey creatures, is forged at a lower temperature to preserve its delicate properties. Weapons made of cold iron cost twice as much to make as their normal counterparts. Also, adding any magical enhancements to a cold iron weapon increases its price by 2,000 gp. This increase is applied the first time the item is enhanced, not once per ability added.

Items without metal parts cannot be made from cold iron. An arrow could be made of cold iron, but a quarterstaff could not. A double weapon with one cold iron half costs 50% more than normal.

Hardness: 10; Cost: light armor + 200 gp, medium armor + 500 gp, heavy armor + 1,000 gp, shield + 500 gp, ammunition + 50 gp, light weapon + 150 gp, one-handed weapon, or one head of a double weapon + 300 gp, two-handed weapon, or both heads of a double weapon + 500 gp, other items 50 gp/lb.

This material has the strength and durability of steel while being as transparent as glass. Spellcasters and alchemists, via transmutation, have developed the ability to give glass the properties of steel, and steel the properties of glass.

Items can be made via Craft (armor), Craft (weapons), Craft (blacksmithing), or Craft (glassblowing) check, appropriate to the type of item.

Finished products must be masterwork quality if possible (included in the cost above). The resulting material is transparent and the color of the caster’s choice (though is most often colorless), appearing much like clear volcanic glass. The weight of the item is as normal for an item of that type. This material is subject to neither magnetism nor rust.

Leaded (Modification)
HP/Hardness: As base metal. Cost: + 10 gp per pound.

Leaded items have hollow channels running through the center that is filled with lead, increasing their weight by + 50%.. Lead-cored weapons hit with greater impact, suffering a -1 to hit penalty and gaining a +2 bonus to damage rolls when dealing bludgeoning or slashing damage (this extra damage is multiplied on a critical hit).

Lead-cored armor grants its wearer negative energy resistance 2 for light armor and clothing, 5 for medium armor, and 10 for heavy armor. However, the wearer takes an additional – 1 penalty to all Dexterity- and Strength-based skill checks due to the unusual weight, and reduces their maximum Dexterity bonus by 1 (to a minimum of 0).

Lead-cored objects weigh 1.5 times as much as their normal counterparts. Otherwise, leaded objects share the statistics of their base material.

Living Steel
Hardness: 15. Cost: Ammunition +10 gp, Light armor + 500 gp, Medium armor + 1,000 gp, Heavy armor + 1,500 gp, Weapon + 500 gp, Shield + 100 gp, Other Items + 250 gp/lb

Some trees suck up potent minerals through their roots the same way others draw water from the ground. Though these trees blunt saws and axes used to hew them and shrug off fire, they eventually succumb to time or the elements. When properly harvested, these fallen trees produce nuggets of a metal called living steel. This glossy green metal slowly repairs itself. An item made from living steel repairs damage to itself at a rate of 2 hit points per day, or 1 hit point per day if it has the broken condition. Items not primarily of metal are not meaningfully affected by being partially made of living steel.

Armor and shields made from living steel can damage metal weapons that strike them. Whenever the wielder of a metal weapon rolls a natural 1 on an attack roll against a creature wearing living steel armor or wielding a living steel shield, the item must make a DC 20 Fortitude save or gain the broken condition. If the weapon already has the broken condition, it is instead destroyed. Living steel cannot damage adamantine weapons in this way.

Hardness: 15 Cost: Light armor + 1,000 gp, Medium armor + 4,000 gp, Heavy armor + 9,000 gp, Shield + 1,500 gp, Other Items + 500 gp/lb.

Mithral is a rare, silvery metal that is lighter than steel but just as hard. When worked like steel, it can be used to create amazing armor, and is occasionally used for other items as well. Most mithral armors are one category lighter than normal for purposes of movement and other limitations. Heavy armors are treated as medium, and medium armors are treated as light, but light armors are still treated as light. This decrease does not apply to proficiency in wearing the armor. A character wearing mithral full plate must be proficient in wearing heavy armor to avoid adding the armor's check penalty on all his attack rolls and skill checks that involve moving. Spell failure chances for armors and shields made from mithral are decreased by 10%, maximum Dexterity bonuses are increased by 2, and armor check penalties are decreased by 3 (to a minimum of 0).

An item made from mithral weighs half as much as the same item made from other metals. In the case of weapons, this lighter weight does not change a weapon's size category or the ease with which it can be wielded (whether it is light, one-handed, or two-handed). Items not primarily of metal are not meaningfully affected by being partially made of mithral. (A longsword can be a mithral weapon, while a quarterstaff cannot.) Mithral weapons count as silver for the purpose of overcoming damage reduction.

Weapons and armors fashioned from mithral are always masterwork items as well; the masterwork cost is included in the prices given below.

Quicksilver (Modification)
HP: 75% of base material; Hardness: as material. Cost: Light blades + 1,000 gp, one handed blades + 3,000 gp, two handed blades + 5,000 gp.

Quicksilver weapons rely on specially forged blades that are partially hollow inside. As the blade is swung, the quicksilver contained inside is channeled into the blade, maximizing the force of the blow.

The increased weight is more difficult to control but amplifies the power of the attack. Treat quicksilver-filled blades as one size category larger (-2 to hit, increase damage dice by 1 category), but require no more effort than usual (light doesn’t increase to 1 handed, 1 handed doesn’t increase to 2 handed, 2 handed doesn’t become unusable).

Quicksilver-filled can be added to a slashing weapon, including one composed of another special material.

Steel, Chthonic
Hardness: 15; Cost: ammunition + 150 gp per missile, Light armor + 8,000, Medium armor + 12,000 gp, Heavy armor + 16,000 gp, Shields + 5,000 gp, weapon + 7500 gp, other items + 5,000 gp/lb.

A scarce metal, the secret of its creation is guarded with a fatal zealousness. This material is primarily mixed with iron and is found as a natural red-orange ore amidst veins of mosaic glass. Naturally brittle, it is hardened by dousing it in a true dragon’s blood during its forging. The finished metal has a gold-red hue with an orange, reflective shine.

Chthonic steel has several valuable qualities, including ease of enchantment, its natural sharpness, and the power to absorb magic missiles. Chthonic steel always retains its edge, even when abused, granting it a +2 bonus to the critical conformation roll of any slashing or piercing weapon it is forged into. Chthonic armor and shields negate magic missile spells that target the wearer in a manner similar to the shield spell. Chthonic steel reduces the creation cost of magic arms and armor made with it by 10%.

Hardness: As steel. Cost: + 10 gp per pound.

ShimmerSteel is both rust resistant and splendidly shiny. Steel objects suspended in alchemical mixtures and subjected to elemental forces gain a mirrored patina, and are immune to rusting effects, such as the rusting grasp spell or from a rust monster’s touch.

Natural Materials


Dragonscale armor is constructed out of the scales of a true dragon. The wearer gains Resistance to one element based on the dragon type (fire for red, lightning for blue, etc).
 Armor Light
 Medium Heavy Shield
 Resist 5 10 15 10

Additionally, the scales retain some of the dragon's magical toughness. The armor gains an additional Armor Bonus for every 8 points of the dragon's Natural Armor bonus. This modifies the Armor Bonus of the armor, and therefore stacks with enhancement and natural armor bonuses.

Diplomacy checks involving dragons suffer a -5 penalty when wearing dragonscale armor, or -10 if the wearer's armor is of the same dragon type.

Nystrian Silk
Hardness: 0; Cost: tunic 4,000 gp

Spun from the webs of the cocoons of horrific denizens residing in a haunted forest. Once famous and highly prized, it has recently been coming to market once again after nearly a century of its absence. It is most often transformed into a shirt, made from the alchemically treated silk. This silk is woven in layers specifically designed to trap piercing weapons, snagging them so they fail to harm the wearer.

After being treated alchemically, this material is almost always woven into a masterwork silk tunic (included in the cost). This is considered padded armor but it can be worn under any other type of armor adding no weight and offering DR 2/bludgeoning.

Legendary, Ultra Rare and Unique

Horacalcum (Orichalcum)

The rarest of the known skymetals, this dull, coppery substance warps time around it, making things seem to speed up or slow down. Almost never found in amounts greater than a pound, horacalcum is the same weight and density as steel, but is much more durable. A weapon made of horacalcum gains a +1 circumstance bonus on attack rolls (ammunition can be made of horacalcum, but doesn't grant any bonus on attack rolls). An entire suit of armor made from this metal is fantastically expensive, but since a suit of horacalcum armor simultaneously allows its wearer to perceive time at a slower rate (and thus react more quickly), some consider the cost justifiable. A suit of light horacalcum armor grants a +2 bonus on Initiative checks, medium horacalcum armor grants a +4 bonus on Initiative checks, and heavy horacalcum armor grants a +6 bonus on Initiative checks. Weapons and armor made of horacalcum are always of masterwork quality—the masterwork cost is included in the prices given below.

Weapons and armor made of horacalcum have one-quarter more hit points than normal. Horacalcum has 30 hit points per inch of thickness and hardness 15. Horacalcum increases a weapon's costs by 6,000 gp, light armor by 10,000 gp, medium armor by 30,000 gp, and heavy armor by 60,000 gp.

Hardness 20. Cost: light weapon + 4,000 gp, one handed weapon + 6,000 gp, two handed weapon + 8,000 gp for common crystalline, cost x200 for true crystalline
Using precious stones to line the edge of bladed weapons, crystalline weapons are capable of slicing through the toughest of hides. A weapon edged in crystal ignores half of the armor bonus granted by armor (round up). Against magical armor, this applies only to the armor, but not the enhancement bonus of the armor. This also applies to shields. The weapon itself must be enchanted to at least the same level as the armor to enjoy this effect, otherwise it’s treated as a normal weapon. Furthermore, if used to sunder a weapon or strike an inanimate object the weapon deals an additional +1d6 points of damage.

These weapons are extremely fragile, despite their incredible hardness. A crystalline weapon shatters on a natural attack roll of a 1; its hardness is 20 but it only has 5 hp. Only slashing and piercing weapons may be crystalline.

*Crystalline, True*

Value Cost x50 for common crystalline, cost x200 for true crystalline
HP/inch 5; Hardness 20
True crystalline weaponry is rare in the extreme. These weapons are made entirely from a precious crystal or gem and are fragile but very lethal weapons used only in the times of greatest need. A true crystalline blade is typically made of diamond. It ignores armor bonuses of armor, as well as deflection bonuses from magical items. Against magical armor, the weapon needs to have an enhancement bonus equal to or greater than that of the armor in order to have any special effect; otherwise, it is treated as a normal weapon.

These weapons are extremely fragile, despite their incredible hardness. A weapon that is true crystalline shatters on a natural attack roll of a 1; its hardness is 20 but it only has 5 hp. Only slashing and piercing weapons may be crystalline.

Evil Weaponry

Type of Hellstone     Item Cost Modifier
Armor     +300 gp
Weapons     +600 gp
This metal is blue-green and glows with great power that can poison those who sample of its might for too long or two directly. Hellstone is associated with conjuration magic and artistic passion. Hellstone functions as steel when used to craft weapons and armor, but anyone who carries or wears hellstone arms or armor becomes sickened for as long as the gear is carried or worn, plus an additional 1d4 hours after it is removed. Likewise, a character in an area with heavy concentrations of hellstone becomes sickened as long as he remains in the area. This is a poison effect.

Weapons and armor made from hellstone glow with an intensity equal to that of a candle. Scholars have long debated where the glow and associated sickening effect come from. Hellstone weapons are treated as masterwork weapons and are able to bypass the damage reduction of azatas. Armor are considered masterwork as well.

Hellstone can also be powdered and alchemically distilled with other rare catalysts and chemicals to form a much more potent toxin. A pound of Hellstone is enough to make 1 dose of hellstone powder.

Hellstone Powder: Poison—ingested; save Fortitude DC 18; onset 10 minutes; frequency 1/minute for 6 minutes; effect 1d4 Con plus nausea; cure 2 saves; Cost 900 gp.